The 14th annual World of Pinot Noir, a two-day event celebrating that alluring wine grape, will be held Feb. 28 through March 1 at Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara.
The new venue is not only a luxurious feast for the senses, but also recognizes Santa Barbara County's wine country as a place that introduced many to pinot noir, as 2014 will be the 10th anniversary of the iconic movie Sideways.
"It's hard to believe it has been a decade since Sideways came out," muses Norm Yost of Flying Goat Cellars and this year's World of Pinot Noir president. "Having our event at the Bacara Resort and recognizing the effect of the movie is exciting! We look forward to welcoming those who join us each year, as well as newcomers to our 14th celebration of pinot noir."
The effect of pinot noir on film and vice-versa will be explored via a panel comprised of participants from Sideways as well as a more recent wine-related film, Somm, in a Saturday seminar titled "Hollywood & Wine." The main focus of the event, however, revolves around the people and places of pinot noir. The world's most important wine-growing regions will be represented at seminars, dinners and Grand Tastings.
California's coastal appellations will be well represented, joined by winemakers bringing their pinot noirs from Oregon, British Columbia, New York's Finger Lakes, Spain, Hungary, New Zealand, Australia and more. The epicenter of pinot noir and the motherland is, of course, Burgundy, France, which will be well represented at the 2014 event.
Maison Louis Jadot's winemaker, Frederic Barnier, will pour a selection of wines from the Beaune 1er Cru Clos des Ursules Vineyard at a tasting seminar on Friday, as well as hosting an intimate dinner on Saturday evening. WOPN guests can explore the Insider Wines of the Cote d'Or on Saturday with French Wine Society educator Don Kinnan, who will lead participants through a tasting of wines from that hallowed region.
Attendees to the World of Pinot Noir are invited to "taste the world" at two Grand Tastings, which include wines from hundreds of international and domestic wineries.
Because all wines are better with great food and good company, each of the events at the World of Pinot Noir will be accompanied and complemented by the exemplary cuisine of Chef David Reardon's culinary team, including an internationally themed dinner on Friday evening.
Friday, Feb. 28
» Burgundy and Oregon: Parallels in Latitude — A Look at 45 North. Exploring the wines of Oregon's Willamette Valley and Maison Louis Jadot's Beaune 1er Cru Clos des Ursules vineyard. Moderated by Katherine Cole. The seminar pairing is followed by a three-course lunch, paired with the wines.
» Pinot Noir by the Sea Grand Tasting — A tasting of pinot noir from more than 100 worldwide producers, overlooking the Pacific Ocean and complemented by wine country appetizers and a full array of cheeses from C'est Cheese.
» International Dinner — Chef David Reardon and his Bacara culinary team will team up with our Pinot producers for an incredible internationally focused five-course meal complemented by the exemplary wine service always provided by our team of sommeliers.
» Sea Smoke Cellars Dinner in the Miró Cellar — An intimate dinner featuring the wines of Sta.RitaHills' Sea Smoke Cellars. Wines presented by Victor Gallegos.
» Screening — Sideways and Somm will be screened throughout the day in the Bacara theater.
Saturday, March 1
» The Insider Wines of the Cote d'Or — The secret wine, small producers, and boutique producers of the Cote d'Or, including a look at the mountain of Corton, the greatest expanse of Grand Cru vineyard acreage. Presented by Don Kinnan, followed by a 3-course lunch complemented by many of the wines presented earlier.
» Hollywood & Wine — Panelists on an exploration of just why Pinot Noir has become such a Hollywood starlet. It's Sideways vs. Somm! Lunch will be provided by non other than Frank Ostini of the Hitching Post II restaurant (as featured in the film) and moderated by Sara Schneider.
» Pinot Noir by the Sea Grand Tasting — Featuring a different roster of wines than Friday's Grand Tasting and more than 120 producers. Guests will nosh on wine country appetizers, worldly cheeses and a terrific view of the Pacific from the Grand Ballroom's terraces.
» Mason Louis Jadot Dinner in the Miró Cellar — Three dozen guests will dine with winemaker Frederic Barnier in the beautiful wine cellar. Grand Cru wines and a six-course gourmet meal and legendary wine service.
» The Gala — A communal gathering of friends old and new, winemakers, pinot-philes, chefs and sommeliers. It's our last hurrah of the 14th Annual World of Pinot Noir!
Tickets to the event are sold on a first-come, first-served basis with full details on the World of Pinot Noir website.
— Damon Miele represents World of Pinot Noir.